is this book cover a pastiche of another, older book cover?
December 13, 2016 2:56 AM   Subscribe

I just bought the Faber paperback edition of A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear McBride. The cover looks familiar - the rounded serifs in the typeface, and the apple at the bottom. Is it a pastiche of or reference to another, famous, older book cover? Stylistically, I'm thinking 1970s.

In this version, the apple is going soft & mouldy. There's also a water stain at the bottom of the image. I don't know how much of this I'm imagining, but I can picture those as potentially being textually relevant variations from the original.

No spoilers please! I've only just started reading. Thanks.
posted by rd45 to Media & Arts (10 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
from an article on the cover:
old Jackie magazines and cheap make-up packaging [...] inspired the font choice.
(i'm worried the first sentence of the article contains a spoiler - perhaps someone who's read the book can check?)
posted by andrewcooke at 3:46 AM on December 13, 2016 [3 favorites]

(also, it doesn't mention being a pastiche or copy - it's an interview with the designer, and she describes the process)
posted by andrewcooke at 3:53 AM on December 13, 2016

I get an Erica Jong vibe from that cover. But yeah- it's a very strong 70's reference.
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 4:21 AM on December 13, 2016 [3 favorites]

I thought it might be Diary of a Mad Housewife But that's not quite it.
posted by shibori at 5:12 AM on December 13, 2016

See also: The Feminine Mystique, Betty Friedan; Sex and the Single Girl, Helen Gurley Brown; Portnoy's Complaint, Philip Roth; common in the 1960s-1970s (but not as common as I remembered, gave up on trying to find more).
posted by AzraelBrown at 6:35 AM on December 13, 2016

Old editions of Plath's The Bell Jar have the title in heavy type with rounded serifs and featuring a decaying rose. Similar, perhaps?
posted by gyusan at 7:01 AM on December 13, 2016 [1 favorite]

I'd guess it's a nod to Jacqueline Susanne (Valley of the Dolls, Once Is Not Enough, The Love Machine, etc.) lots of which had a similar typeface on a white background, at least as paperbacks. The half-apple is way more clever than those, though.
posted by miles per flower at 7:01 AM on December 13, 2016 [2 favorites]

The cover looks familiar - the rounded serifs in the typeface, and the apple at the bottom

My reaction too. I suspect the book we're both remembering is the Penguin paperback edition of Lisa Alther's Original Sins.
posted by verstegan at 2:20 PM on December 13, 2016

thanks for all those great references! will come back to the Creative Review article once I've finished reading
posted by rd45 at 2:12 AM on December 14, 2016

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